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The Legend of Hercules (2014)

tomatometer

3

Average Rating: 2.3/10
Reviews Counted: 71
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 69

Cheap-looking, poorly acted, and dull, The Legend of Hercules is neither fun enough to qualify as an action movie nor absorbing enough to work on a dramatic level.

13

Average Rating: 2.6/10
Critic Reviews: 15
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 13

Cheap-looking, poorly acted, and dull, The Legend of Hercules is neither fun enough to qualify as an action movie nor absorbing enough to work on a dramatic level.

audience

35

liked it
Average Rating: 2.7/5
User Ratings: 38,076

My Rating

Movie Info

In the epic origin story THE LEGEND OF HERCULES, Kellan Lutz stars as the mythical Greek hero - the son of Zeus, a half-god, half-man blessed with extraordinary strength. Betrayed by his stepfather, the King, and exiled and sold into slavery because of a forbidden love, Hercules must use his formidable powers to fight his way back to his rightful kingdom. Through harrowing battles and gladiator-arena death matches, Hercules embarks on a legendary odyssey to overthrow the King and restore peace

Apr 29, 2014

$18.8M

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April 29, 2014:
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All Critics (71) | Top Critics (15) | Fresh (2) | Rotten (69)

Essentially a Monday Night Raw episode with mythological dressing.

January 16, 2014 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The dialogue isn't dubbed, but is written and delivered so indifferently that it might as well have been.

January 12, 2014 Full Review Source: AV Club
AV Club
Top Critic IconTop Critic

[Other "Hercules" movies] at least nodded at classical mythology. Harlin's boasts a Hercules in name chiefly and banks on moviegoers' ignorance.

January 12, 2014 Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It delivers what it promises, which is muscular guys in skimpy clothes fighting and howling, as well as some large-scale digitally enhanced battle sequences.

January 12, 2014 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The Legend of Hercules may not track, but Harlin still knows how to set up a rousing circus.

January 12, 2014 Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The whole thing is a total bore.

January 10, 2014 Full Review Source: Arizona Republic
Arizona Republic
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Lunkhead Kellan Lutz is the demigod's density in Renny Harlin's 300-lite, MST3K-ready retelling of the classical legend. Think Jesus with muscles, by the power of Greyskull.

April 29, 2014 Full Review Source: Flick Filosopher
Flick Filosopher

There's nothing here to engage the viewer or make them care one iota about what's occurring on the screen, making it no wonder that this got dumped into theaters in the middle of January.

April 28, 2014 Full Review Source: Examiner.com
Examiner.com

The film opens on a huge battle in the Greek city of Argos, but it often ends up feeling like the director bought it cheap at the high street namesake.

April 1, 2014 Full Review Source: SFX Magazine
SFX Magazine

Even dental extraction is more enjoyable to endure than this artistically bankrupt misfire.

March 29, 2014 Full Review Source: Digital Spy
Digital Spy

No one seems to have high hopes for it - though it might well help to pass a wet afternoon when it shows up on Netflix 15 minutes from now.

March 28, 2014 Full Review Source: Guardian
Guardian

This lousy attempt at a revival isn't even good for camp laughs.

March 24, 2014 Full Review Source: Total Film
Total Film

The lore of Hercules has spanned centuries, yet it's unlikely to ever see a more generic treatment on film than that of Renny Harlin's overblown origin story.

March 24, 2014 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

Somehow more cartoonish than Disney's version, which actually was a cartoon.

February 24, 2014 Full Review Source: EricDSnider.com
EricDSnider.com

A low point is when Hercules kills the Nemean lion, who seemed to be minding his own business in his forest; not cool, Herc, even if he was all digital and as fakey as those stuffed cats they used to throw at Steve Reeves.

January 24, 2014 Full Review Source: Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)

A misfire from top to bottom so complete that even when you think you have a handle on all the ways it can be bad, it pulls out another one that's even worse.

January 21, 2014 Full Review Source: Antagony & Ecstasy
Antagony & Ecstasy

Mythical tale is violent and poorly executed.

January 17, 2014 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

This origin story of the great hero Hercules (Lutz) of Greek mythology lacks even one semi-decent action piece.

January 16, 2014 Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle
Austin Chronicle

Boldly unimaginative and ferociously derivative

January 15, 2014 Full Review Source: Killer Movie Reviews
Killer Movie Reviews

When awfulness reaches a certain point, it achieves unintentional hilarity.

January 14, 2014 Full Review Source: Quad City Times (Davenport, IA)
Quad City Times (Davenport, IA)

Tepid and tedious with acting so ludicrous that it's laughable.

January 13, 2014 Full Review Source: SSG Syndicate
SSG Syndicate

Through the centuries, the legend of Hercules has survived. It will survive the splat of this big B.C. cheese ball, too.

January 13, 2014 Full Review Source: American Profile
American Profile

Harlin's '90s heyday of crafting fun fare becomes that much more of a distant memory.

January 13, 2014 Full Review Source: TheMovieReport.com
TheMovieReport.com

The best that can be said of this latest take on Hercules is that it is over fast,.

January 12, 2014 Full Review Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press
St. Paul Pioneer Press

Audience Reviews for The Legend of Hercules

Apparently acting lessons were not among the Labors of Hercules. The true Herculean labor associated with this film seems to be the cleaning of the stables -- what dreck. CGI effects were glamorous and stunning at times; woefully inept at other times. The story was random and seemed sophomoricly episodic. The plot was unnecessarily stupid -- for example, killing the Nemean Lion in a distant place and then showing up with it skinned, tanned and cleaned in the next scene with the unnecessary and illogical comment that Hercules had been gone for a mere two hours. What?! This is a sad attempt to make a film far beyond the filmmakers' skill. Nevertheless. if you ignore the considerable amount of illogical and stupid permeating the film, it is fun -- and has a lot of great beef cake to drool over.
June 29, 2014
cchclaw

Super Reviewer

Wow, what a massive and tremendous mess of a film with a tremendous amount of awful acting, awful love story and sloppy action scenes that try to rip off the Spartacus tv series and 300. Kellen Lutz has no personality or charisma what so ever and looks more like a stuntman than a leading man. Scott Adkins and Liam McIntyre are great actors but sadly this film does not do them any justice. This film is a total waste and a complete piece of crap that makes me wish i can get that 99 minutes of my life back, which i probably wont since God has decided to spite me and any other audience member that decided to watch this at all. The worst picture of the year award nominations should begin with this piece of trash
May 17, 2014
allan913

Super Reviewer

I thought, "another sword and sandal EPIC" and so i began with very little hope (and sort of sneering) just to start. Halfway through I realized that I was watching a better movie than what my expectation had lead me to believe, but its still sword and sandal, so let's keep things in perspective.
Not too far removed from "300", director Renny Harlin (yeah I know, that guy, I was surprised too) returns us to those thrilling days of yesteryear when superheroes had to be born to the thing, cause dad was a, urp, god. And why wear tights when skin looks good?
Overall, not a bad effort and its got its entertaining over the top moments.
April 29, 2014
ApeneckFletcher

Super Reviewer

The film formerly known as 'Hercules: The Legend Begins' which scarily makes you think there might be sequels in a possible beefcake franchise. Aaaaaand also even more scarily known at one time as 'Hercules 3D' which not only makes me shudder at the thought of how ridiculous a gimmick that would be, but the fact they would probably make 3D sequels too, brrrrrr! me blood runs cold at the thought of it.

So round one, lets see if this Hercules film can...oh it can't. So in ancient Greece Yuri Boyka...aka Scott Adkins, the man who makes pure straight to DVD films for a career, is the baddie King Amphitryon. This guy is apparently running things badly and no one likes him, the film shows none of this but we are made to believe it because he shouts and growls a lot. He's gonna marry off Hebe the Princess to his slimy son Iphicles, problem is Hebe is in love with mighty Hercules played by...Kellan Lurch? Putz? Yutz?, this makes them both rather upset. So in typical Romeo and Juliet style they try to escape together, get caught, and Hercules is banished to fight in Egypt. Naturally this is all a ruse by the naughty King to try and kill off Hercules because he has also been foreseen to bring down his kingdom.

Now I don't really know the full ins and outs of ancient Greece as its extremely complicated, but I'm pretty sure this film is not historically accurate. I take a wild swing with this statement as King Galenus at the start of the film who is killed by Amphitryon was actually a Greek physician and philosopher, unless they just used the name. Also Hebe was the daughter of Zeus and Hera which I don't believe is used here, but anyway you wouldn't use this film for a history lesson.

If this were a TV movie then I'd be a bit more positive here, the fact its a big budget flick directed by Renny Harlin is a bit embarrassing really. By the chariots of Zeus! the visuals are drab, really drab!, its unbelievably poor looking in every aspect. The costumes are bland and lifeless, but I guess the excuse there could be its a more realistic take. Lots of bad greenscreen, the few real locations used are unexciting whilst most other landscapes we see are CGI and the sets are so darkly lit my guess is that its to hide the fact they look like foam and rubber. Most of the film uses CGI to make up the backgrounds foregrounds...everything! and its obvious, hell the CGI looks like it was done ten years ago.

The first bit of action that really nailed home how poor this all was was the sequence where Hercules fights the lion. Holy Mufasa! this sequence looks terrible, the lion must be a joke right? isn't it? how big was this budget?. The acting in this film is laughable it really is, putting the constant growling and gnashing teeth of Adkins aside, it feels like you're watching a sci-fi B-movie from the 50's. No disrespect to those classics but in this day and age you come to expect a bit more for a major release...don't you?!!.

There is very little action in the film which doesn't really help its case, especially when the acting realism and visuals are so bad. What action we do get is done in the most horrendously pointless needless and shameless rip off from the '300' franchise ever to grace the cinema screen thus far methinks. It wouldn't be so bad if it actually looked half as good, or if it was even necessary, but it just feels so futile, so totally meaningless and clearly done just to try and make everything appear more thrilling because otherwise it would be lame. Blatant leeching off another films concept.

The other thing is I don't know what this film wants to be, a serious historical epic? a bloody sword n sandals action flick? a drama? a fantasy? what?!. There are hints of a blood soaked action flick but it never materialises, it just cuts away at every crucial moment, there is no blood or gore at all really...so maybe its for the family?. The gladiatorial battles are laughable bad with cliched corny choreography and characters, the six undefeated warriors were pathetic and frankly I'm unsure how they became undefeated. One of the warriors was even a woman! women weren't really seen in the arenas, especially with the male gladiators, it didn't happen, but naturally Hercules doesn't kill her pfft! wuss.

Love the short sequence just before the battle with the six warriors. Chiron and Hercules mate Sotiris reach the arena and look down on it from this massive cliff. They must be a gazillion feet above this arena in one shot...but by the pecs of Lutz! in the next shot they're in the arena just in time to watch Hercules do his thing!. They don't even look tired or sweaty!, that's some ancient Greek magic right there. Oh did I forget to mention that these arena battles are set up by a character who is clearly a rip off from Oliver Reed's character in 'Gladiator', the guy even looks the same with his facial hair and costume, is there a lawyer in the house?.

This film is such a mess it really is, most of the time it comes across as a lifeless dull drama with little bits of tame bloodless '300' wannabe style action. But out of the blue we get a couple outrageous sequences of fantasy involving Hercules using two massive boulders on chains like nunchakus in true Marvel style. And then a sequence where he summons the power of Greyskull and proceeds to kill hundreds of warriors using a lighting empowered sword...wut?!. After all that its back to being a dull plot hole ridden drama/historical epic/'300'/'Spartacus'/'Gladiator' wannabe cash cow franchise (well that ain't happening anymore).
April 16, 2014
phubbs1

Super Reviewer

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